Piss poor article.
Being sociopathic isn't about having one or two of those characteristics but several or all. In all the stories presented, the story centers on how an INDIVIDUAL person showcased ONE of those characteristics and then, based on a piece-meal analysis, extends that "diagnosis" to the entirety of their religion.
By the rationale laid out by the author, in other words, anyone could make the case that any institution is sociopathic, whether secular or religious. I could just as easily find 3 examples of individuals that have shown singular sociopathic behaiviour in the sciences, in public education, in business, in art, etc and then conclude that all those institutions are sociopathic... which of course they aren't
In other words, this article is filled with hyperbolic claims and gross misuse of psychology made by a person wanting to sell books by misusing psychology to supplement their weak thesis.
Christianity has ALWAYS been sociopathic.
The Pilgrims were run out of England and they came to the "New World" because
they were even too much for the Church of England.
They got here in 1620, and the Salem Witch Trials began in 1692.
Christians have been killing those they've deemed "unworthy" for thousands of years.
Can't tell me that the Crusades weren't undertaken by a bunch of sociopaths.
I think if one takes a long, hard, studied look at most religions and specifically western monotheistic ones, it will become clear that the foundations of the religions tend toward fostering various forms of sociopathic behaviors. The foundations of this aberration are built right into the basic structure. One can trace it back to early Judaism and follow its ugly little path up through the beginnings of the church. Evangelicals have merely embraced something socially destructive with a tiny bit more enthusiasm than other elements of the church.
However, this is not just a product of the church. The larger percentage of politicians come from similar backgrounds -- and always have -- and they carry it into whatever office they hold. What I'm saying here is that this is not something new or even different. It has been with us over several millennia and the degree of sociopathic behavior has fluctuated through different generations. We are witnessing one of the upswings in many ways. There is an upsurge of right wing authoritarianism coupled to an increase in religious fervor and they feed off one another. Fear of the other. Anger at perceived persecution. Seeking and finding potential scapegoats. Belittling and undermining institutions, groups, and individuals that represent resistance to some goal for the greater good.
The article is too narrow and doesn't look at the broader picture. Zeroing in on one aspect gives refuge to other even more important issues. It is time that people open their eyes to this panorama and not be distracted by shiny objects.
Yes, many of its most vocal leaders and spokespersons have become sociopathic. They are so focused on gaining p down people's throats -- via the force of law -- that they will do the most evil things and support the most evil people. They do this simply so that they can benefit from the control that they seek.